Born: March 3, 1921
Raised by religious Jewish parents, Boleslaw and his older sister grew up in an apartment complex in a Jewish section of Warsaw. His father worked as an accountant. When Boleslaw was 8 years old, his mother died, and an aunt moved in to help raise him and his sister. Boleslaw loved electronics. When he was 10 years old, he succeeded in building a portable radio.
1933-39: The Germans attacked Warsaw on September 8, 1939. The bombing was relentless. My father wouldn't leave his ill relatives but my sister and I decided to escape. Frenzied crowds separated us from Papa at the station. We didn't get to say goodbye before boarding a train for the Soviet border. Arriving at a little village on the Polish side, we paid a man to lead us by foot through the forests to the Soviet side.
1940-44: By the winter of 1942 I was in a labor camp. I fell so ill with typhus that I couldn't eat. I promised my bread ration to another prisoner, so he'd prop me up during roll call. One day I couldn't take it anymore. I tied a belt to an upper bunk, put the other end around my neck, and jumped off. The next thing I remembered, I was lying on the floor of the barracks. The other prisoner was trying to revive me, shouting, "Hurry, you'll miss today's bread rations."